June 14, 2005

Modern Times reflect big changes for guitarist Marc Antoine

New album due August 16, major summer tour with Dave Koz & Friends
Modern times call for modern measures.  After creating a distinctive classical, Latin jazz, flamenco sound that has repeatedly lead him to the top of the charts, guitarist Marc Antoine adventurously stretches his creative muse in new directions on Modern Times, his seventh solo album, scheduled for release on August 16th from the Rendezvous Entertainment record label.  The festive “Bella Via,” on which Antoine drives his signature acoustic guitar along a shuffling Latin percussion groove, will be the first cut going for adds at contemporary jazz radio on July 11th.   
It’s rare for a successful artist in peak form to audaciously step outside of the proven to push the creative envelope, reinventing himself as a new musical persona, but that’s exactly what Antoine is doing with panache.  Recording the album in his studio in Madrid, Spain, Antoine produced Modern Times with European dance music producer-club DJ David Ferrero and collaborated on nine new compositions.  The album reflects a confident step into foreign terrain for Antoine.  Known for his acoustic guitar bravura, he plays electric guitar on several cuts and even croons a cool lead vocal on the romantic samba cover, “La Belle Dame Sans Regrets,” a song originally recorded by Sting.  The Paris-born musician has affection for incorporating his world travels and various cultures into his music.  Antoine continues his affair with Spanish, Latin and European rhythms and riffs, but he expands his itinerary on the new record to include musical excursions into South Africa (“Umbele”) and India (“Cantar al Amor”), the latter of which features sacred chanting.  Throughout the album, the production boasts plenty of vocal samples, sometimes dreamy or sometimes haunting female backing vocals, and hip club beats and grooves that set an array of vibes upon which Antoine’s moody and melodic guitar meanders. 

“Years ago, I read a quote from Miles Davis about when he ventured into entirely new creative directions.  He said that he found someone from outside of his (jazz) world to collaborate with.  That’s exactly what I did on Modern Times.  David (Ferrero) is very well known in the club world and he brought an entirely fresh sensibility to my music,” explained Antoine.  “Although people primarily know me for my acoustic flamenco guitar sound, for years I’ve also done sessions on electric (guitar) for Celine Dion, Queen Latifah and others.  I wanted to explore a different musical palate by using an electric guitar on some tracks.  I think some might be caught off guard by this album, but I’m pleased with the way it came out and I hope people will listen to it with an open mind.”   
To support Modern Times, Antoine will spend the summer on a major U.S. concert tour with sax star Dave Koz, R&B vocalist Jeffrey Osborne and Praful, a cutting-edge sax player who incorporates ambient vibes and electronic dance beats to his music.  Koz is co-founder of Rendezvous Entertainment, for which Antoine records. 
To date, Antoine has scored four number one singles – “Sunland,” “Mas Que Nada,” “Mediterraneo” and “Funky Picante.”  He has deployed his guitar finesse to recordings and concert performances by some of the most distinguished and diverse artists in music, including Sting, Cher, George Benson, Basia, Soul II Soul, Selena, Guru’s Jazzmatazz, Will Downing, David Benoit, Rick Braun, Peter White and Richard Elliot.         
Marc Antoine’s Modern Times contains the following songs:
“Modern Times”                                                       “Can You Feel It”
“Samba Hood”                                                         “Shake It Out”
“La Belle Dame Sans Regrets”                                “Cantar al Amor”
“Camden Town”                                                     “Bella Via”
“Umbele”                                                                 “If You Believe”

Catch Marc Antoine performing with Dave Koz, Jeffrey Osborne and Praful on the following dates:
June 10                   Reading, PA                            Reading Eagle Theatre
June 11                   Winona, Ontario                       E.D. Smith Farms
June 12                   Westbury, NY                          North Fork Theatre
June 16                   Albuquerque, NM                    Sandia Amphitheatre
June 17                   Denver, CO                             Paramount Theatre
June 18                   Phoenix, AZ                            Celebrity Theatre
June 23                   Philadelphia, PA                      Merriam Theatre
June 24                   Richmond, VA                          Kanawha Theatre
June 25                   Raleigh, NC                             Meymandi Concert Hall
June 26                   Charlotte, NC                           Belk Theatre
July 7                       Fresno, CA                              Saroyan Theatre
July 8                       Sacramento, CA                      Radisson Hotel Grove Amphitheatre
July 9 & 10              Temecula, CA                          Thornton Winery
July 13                     Atlanta, GA                               Chastain Park Amphitheatre
July 14                     Louisville, KY                           Palace Theatre
July 15 & 16            Chicago, IL                              Navy Pier Skyline Stage
July 17                     Detroit, MI                                Jerome Duncan Fox Theatre                 
July 20                     Cleveland, OH                         State Theatre
July 21                     Kettering, OH                           Fraze Pavilion for the Performing Arts
July 22                     St. Louis, MO                           The Roberts Orpheum Theatre
July 23                     Apple Valley, MN                     Music In The Zoo
July 29                     Henderson, NV                       Sunset Station Amphitheatre
July 30                     Oakville, CA                             Robert Mondavis Summer Festival
July 31                     Saratoga, CA                           Montalvo Center for the Arts
August 19                San Diego, CA                        Humphrey’s By The Bay
August 20                Concord, CA                           Chronicle Pavilion
August 21                Hollywood, CA                        Hollywood Bowl

Posted by Peter Böhi at June 14, 2005 8:58 PM